As a Food Science and Technology graduate from UCC, I worked in research & development for the Danone group, before returning to university to become a veterinarian. Employed as a clinician in a small animal practice in France I have become aware of the importance of the microbiome in the panoply of diseases which I encounter. However, our therapeutic arsenal is practically devoid of clinical tools to regulate the animal microbiome. This is especially the case for behavioural problems in dogs where 29% of pet dogs, almost 23 million in the US, exhibit signs of anxiety and associated behavioural disorders.
I have recently approached a firm in Toulouse with a project to investigate their prebiotics in collaboration with the APC and the Toulouse veterinary school using MRI to track changes within the canine brain. Ultimately, I aim to incorporate psychobiotics into the canine diet and thus bring the spotlight to bear on the importance and scope of microbiome management within the veterinary profession.